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1 in 5 U.S. kids live in households that lack adequate food

1 in 5 U.S. kids live in households that lack adequate food

Off the Charts blog (The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities) reports on how many people are not yet benefitting from recovery efforts in the U.S.

Some 14.3 percent of the nation’s households were “food insecure” in 2013, meaning they had difficulty affording adequate food at some point during the year, today’s Agriculture Department (USDA) report shows — a figure not statistically different from 2012’s 14.5 percent and well above pre-recession levels (see graph). The persistence of high food insecurity in the aftermath of the recession shows that the economic recovery has failed to reach many low-income families. It also highlights the importance of SNAP (formerly food stamps) in helping families obtain an adequate diet.

The roughly 49 million people in food-insecure households include 15.8 million children, according to the report.

9-3-14fa.pngHouseholds with children face especially high rates of food insecurity: about 19.5 percent among households with children overall and 20.9 percent among households with children under age 6. Research shows that household food insecurity is linked to negative health and developmental outcomes for children, including poorer physical health and psychosocial development, iron deficiency anemia, and higher rates of hospitalization and chronic health conditions.

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